The Chairman of Ooredoo, His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al Thani, has said that the company will build upon this year’s significant achievements to deliver even greater social and technological returns in 2014.
In December, Sheikh Abdullah received the international award for “Best Telecom Leader” from the SAMENA Telecommunications Council, reflecting the major international achievements of Ooredoo in 2013 and His Excellency’s global standing in the international telecommunications industry.
Ooredoo announced its global rebrand in February 2013. The Ooredoo brand is already being used in Qatar, Algeria and Tunisia, and is set for its first launch in Asia in the coming weeks.
His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al Thani, said: “Ooredoo took an important step forward in 2013, when we embraced our new brand and made a promise to our customers that we would strive to support human growth in every market that we operate in. I am pleased and proud to receive the SAMENA Best Telecom Leader award, since it recognises the efforts of the whole Ooredoo Group in enriching our customers’ lives around the world.”
Under His Excellency’s direction, Ooredoo has used the launch of the new brand to transform both its operations and the experience provided to customers, aiming to enhance its status as one of the world’s leading communications companies. Ooredoo has developed its brand to support customers’ ambitions and aspirations, and to support human growth across its global footprint.
In particular, Ooredoo has taken the lead in providing cutting-edge networks for its customers, becoming the first company to offer 4G services in three MENA markets – Qatar, Kuwait and Oman – in 2013. The company has also launched 4G services in the Maldives and its Indonesian operation, Indosat, became the first telecommunication operator to commercially operate a UMTS 900MHz network in Indonesia during the year.
Ooredoo’s network enhancement strategy also saw the nationwide roll-out of 3G in Tunisia during the year, as well as the launch of 3G in Algeria this week.
The focus on enhanced networks has been supported by a range of initiatives aimed at enriching people’s lives, particularly young people, women, entrepreneurs and people in rural communities across the Ooredoo footprint.
In the coming year, Ooredoo is set to extend the impact of its partnership with football superstar Lionel Messi and Messi Foundation. Working with the Messi Foundation, Ooredoo is supporting mobile health clinics to provide medical aid for children in Indonesia, and the programme is set to grow into new markets in 2014.
Equally, Ooredoo’s partnership with Paris Saint-Germain will also reach out to more communities in 2014, with the community coaching programme rolling-out to more young people during the year.
Throughout the year, Ooredoo’s range of services for young people has received widespread praise and won a series of awards. Najahni, a collaborative effort between social initiative Silatech and Ooredoo, offers mobile-based learning and development for young people in Tunisia, and has won a string of important awards in 2013. The company is set to expand this approach to new markets in the coming months.
As part of its wider support for young people, Ooredoo signed up as a founding partner of the ITU Global Youth Summit, held in San José, Costa Rica, in September 2013, to support the development of new ideas for helping young people find educational and employment support.
The company has also continued to provide dedicated services for women in key markets including Iraq and Indonesia. In September 2013 at Clinton Global Initiative in New York, Ooredoo announced its commitment to supporting women’s entrepreneurship in Myanmar in partnership with the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women. Ooredoo Myanmar will develop a franchisee model to enable 30,000 women by 2016 to become entrepreneurs by selling prepaid Ooredoo airtime to their communities.
Ooredoo’s support for closing the mobile gender gap and women’s empowerment was recognised with a major award at the GSMA Mobile World Congress, when Asiacell’s Almas service won the “GSMA mWomen Best Mobile Product or Service for Women in Emerging Markets.”
Perhaps most importantly of all, Ooredoo is set to launch a next-generation network in its newest market of Myanmar during 2014, after securing one of two commercial licences this year. Ooredoo will offer a wide range of mobile communications services to improve the lives of Myanmar consumers and help businesses run more efficiently.
This will include mobile money services, a range of mobile health services, and services to support farmers and agriculture leveraging on its experience in launching those services in other markets.
Ooredoo will roll out these services using a large distribution network which will quickly reach beyond Myanmar’s cities into the country’s rural areas. Over a period of five years, Ooredoo has committed to nationwide geographic coverage of 84% (both voice and data), which equates to around 97% of the population.
The successful roll-out of the Ooredoo brand has proven to be one of the company’s greatest assets in 2013.
In Qatar, which was the first market to embrace the brand, awareness of Ooredoo has reached 100 percent of the market, and the company has also received international recognition. Ooredoo’s transformation programme received the Gold Award for “Best Brand Experience Event” at the 2013 International Business Awards, and the company was named “Best Mobile Operator” at the World Communication Awards.
Another major success story has been Qatar’s roll-out of a nationwide fibre network, which positions the country as a “Leading Fibre Nation”. In a global study based on figures from the FTTH Council, data collected from operators and ADL estimates, Qatar enjoyed one of the fastest nationwide fibre roll-outs in the world since the start of deployment in 2011, as judged by the average percentage of homes passed by Fibre and the number of homes connected per year. The pace of the roll out exceeds that of several highly-developed nations.
His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al Thani, concluded: “2013 has been a year of significant achievements and bold steps forward for Ooredoo and our stakeholders. Next year, we will build upon these achievements, and drive our company to a new level, so that our customers enjoy the widest possible range of benefits wherever they are around the world.”